Sony announced last week that players will be able to upgrade any version of Horizon Forbidden West from PS4 to PS5 for free—but it’s the last first-party release that will include the option to do so.
In a September 4 post on PlayStation.Blog, PlayStation CEO Jim Ryan confirmed that every new first-party cross-gen release in the future would offer players a paid next-gen upgrade path option for $10. This includes the next God of War, Gran Turismo 7, and any other Sony-published games slated to appear on both systems, only exempting Forbidden West.
Now it’ll cost you
The publisher reversed course on preorder plans for its robo-dinosaur sequel announced two days earlier. It did so because it had offered no way, paid or otherwise, for players to upgrade the game’s bare-bones PS4 editions to current-gen. Instead, the convoluted pricing structure required anyone interested in owning Horizon Forbidden West on both consoles to choose from multiple high-cost deluxe editions, a move that had sparked significant backlash from fans.
“It’s abundantly clear that the offerings we confirmed in our pre-order kickoff missed the mark,” Ryan declared in the September 4 post, saying the effects of the global pandemic had delayed Forbidden West beyond its original projected release. “Players who purchase Horizon Forbidden West on PlayStation 4 will be able to upgrade to the PlayStation 5 version for free.
Ryan had pledged in an interview last year that all Sony cross-gen launch games would include free next-gen upgrades, a roster that at the time included the sequel from developer Guerrilla. Even this news walked back the perception that original launch window titles like Forbidden West and Gran Turismo would be PS5 exclusives, as was heavily implied in Sony’s original PS5 reveal showcase. That showcase had stated all game footage shown had been captured on the new hardware.
Until this change, Sony had not landed on a standardized approach for players to upgrade games from PS4 to PS5. Death Stranding: Director’s Cut, due out later this month, allows owners of any version of the original game to upgrade to the PS5 release, including all director’s cut content, for $10.
Meanwhile, the recently released Ghost of Tsushima: Director’s Cut featured an overly complex set of options requiring owners of its base game to buy the director’s cut content, either for $20 on PS4 or $30 on PS5. (Players interested in just getting the new expansion on PS4 can then upgrade to PS5 for $10 later if they choose.)
Sony’s next PlayStation announcements are expected tomorrow afternoon during its online PS5 showcase, which may include updates on God of War, Gran Turismo, or other cross-gen titles.